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Posted: Jul 08, 2011
Berlin university clinic stablishes NanoTherm therapy for the treatment of recurrent brain tumors
(Nanowerk News) Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin has established a new treatment at the Clinic for Radiooncology, Campus Virchow, which offers selected patients a nanomedicine approach for the treatment of recurrent brain tumors. Researchers at Charité–developed the scientific basis for the nanotechnology-based cancer therapy. The clinical trial supporting the therapy's European approval was also conducted in close collaboration with the Charité. MagForce Nanotechnologies AG, a Charité spin off company, is marketing the therapy.
The principle of the therapy is the use of nanoparticles containing iron oxide, which are injected into brain tumor in a procedure similar to a biopsy. The treatment is carried out in a magnetic field applicator (NanoActivator™), a machine that produces an alternating magnetic field and is very safe for humans. Through this high frequency magnetic field, the nanoparticles begin to oscillate and heat is produced from directly within the tumor tissue. Depending on the temperature reached and length of treatment, the tumor cells are either directly destroyed or sensitized for the accompanying chemotherapy or radiation. This novel therapy has the potential to improve the survival for patients with recurrent glioblastoma, an especially malignant type of brain tumor.
"I am pleased that after years of being involved in the research and development for NanoTherm® Therapy, we are now at the stage where we can offer this novel therapeutic approach to selected and not otherwise treatable patients suffering from recurrent glioblastomas," said Prof. Volker Budach, Director of the Clinic for Radiotherapy.
"Here is another example of how the basic research we are supporting today has clinical applications in the future", said Prof. Karl Max Einhäupl, CEO of Charité. "Charité has participated in all development phases of this novel medical technology and most importantly supported our researchers to realize the potential of their ideas, especially in the challenging field of nanomedicine."
Currently, the social insurance companies do not generally reimburse this new treatment option so that payment decisions are based on individual applications.